Keep an Activity Log
I am going to give myself an A- for this. I actually do have an activity log! For the entire year! But I would forget to keep it updated for several weeks in a row, and then go back and stare at a calendar and my journals to try to reconstruct what I'd been up to in those weeks. Several of the columns are of dubious accuracy; I know I've exercised a lot more often than I've actually recorded, for one. The "HS" column is my "happiness scale", and going back to reconstruct that was pretty iffy. And, while I'll grant that I don't write in this LJ regularly, I am still pretty sure I spent more than five hours writing the year's 72 LJ entries.
All this given, I think the data gives a reasonable approximation of most of my creative activities for the year. So, some statistics!
In 2011, I spent about 188 hours on "creative activities that counted", a category which includes:
* Writing original fiction
* Writing World Tree fanfiction (delight_in_wt, to be specific
* Drawing and painting, including 23 hours messing with custom My Little Ponies(tm) (the third custom MLP I attempted broke my spirit when I tried to do clothing. Clothing for an inflexible pony figurine is hard.)
* Preparing for the World Tree sessions
The big winner for the year was Delight: I spent 66 hours writing entries for her community. Another 40+ hours went to game prep. Original fiction received about 30 hours across all categories, most of that on the perenially unfinished Sign and Sacrifice.
Frankly, 188 hours seems rather pitiful, especially compared to the 1500+ hours I spent at my day job. The amount of time spent on original fiction -- in a whole year! -- is even sadder.
On the other hand, 188 hours averages to about 30 minutes a day. That was my original goal back in January ... although my original January goal did not include some of the activities I spent much of my time on this year. When I decided to let the drawing/painting/ponies count, I was supposed to go up to averaging about 40 minutes a day. Oops.
My other resolution was:
Do a significant amount of writing
I was supposed to define what "significant" meant at some later point. I never did. Oops. I guess I'll decide now! This is later, right? telnar always told me that the best way to make sure you achieve your goals is to look back at whatever you did and then decide that was your goal.
The year's word counts were:
Sign and Sacrifice: 20,821
Misc. other original fiction: Around 4,200
World Tree Game Prep: Unsure, probably around 15,000
Misc. other game prep: Around 4,500
So around 92,000 words. Sounds like a significant amount to me!
Interestingly, my estimated conversion of minutes-to-words was that 1 hour = 800 words. Based on word counts and time worked for S&S and Delight, my average word count was 757 per hour.
I was also supposed to figure out goals on a month-by-month basis. In practice, I set a goal in January and made it, then set a goal for February, never changed it, made it for five or six months, acknowledged in September that I was blowing it every month, still didn't change it, and continued to not make it for the rest of the year. So ... nice theory, in practice, not so much difference.
Nominally, I guess I hit my goals, but I am not particularly satisfied with the year's work. On the one hand, I want to write more original fiction. On the other, I like writing Delight and I like running the World Tree game, which is into its third year now. (!) These things take creative energy, and for me, they take much the same creative energy that writing original fiction does.
To be honest, I don't really know why I want to write more original fiction. Because my inner 12-year-old still thinks she will get rich as a writer of original fiction? Because I want more people to read my work, and game prep is only appreciated by the players, while Delight is never going to have more than a small subset of Sythyry's audience? Because fanfiction is cheating? I dunno.
Anyway, that's more a topic for my goals in 2012.